Pressley, Wu, Flaherty atop poll in at-large council race

Michelle Wu could be on her way to securing one of the four at-large Boston City Council seats, according to the latest Suffolk University/Boston Herald poll of tightly screened lightly voters in the November municipal election.

Wu polled 17 percent, following closely behind incumbent Councilor Ayanna Pressley, who got 19 percent. Next in line were Michael Flaherty, a former at-large councilor and 2009 mayoral candidate, who polled at 14 percent and Council president Stephen Murphy, who got 12 percent.

Trailing the top four was Jeffrey Michael Ross, at 9 percent. The other contenders—Martin Keogh, Jack Kelly, and Annissa Essaibi George—all tied at 6 percent.

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The poll also found that nearly two-thirds of likely voters supported increasing the length of the school day or school year, while 24 percent were opposed, and 10 percent were undecided.

Sixty-seven percent of those polled said they would support the revival of “Little City Halls” in Boston’s neighborhoods. These city government outposts, which had been popular in Kevin White’s administration, would increase accessibility to government services.

In addition, the poll also found that 74 percent of likely voters would support a city-sponsored gun buyback program, which the city has used successfully in the past.

The poll is part of a Boston mayoral race partnership between Suffolk University and the Boston Herald that includes polling, candidate forums, commentary and hands-on involvement for Suffolk students, organizers said. (The survey also found that City Councilor John R. Connolly has a 7 point edge over State Representative Martin J. Walsh in the race to become Boston’s next mayor.)

In conducting the poll, Suffolk University used the voter list from the 2012 presidential election and other elections in Boston. The poll used a tight screen to filter out those who weren’t likely to vote or who couldn’t name the approximate time frame of the final election for mayor of Boston. The field of 600 likely election voters was conducted Wednesday, Oct. 2 through Sunday, Oct. 6. The margin of error is plus or minus percent